Friday, January 2, 2015

Published 10:30 AM by with 0 comment

What's In Your Closet?

What's in your closet? Unburdening emotional baggage | Yes, We Rise

Admittedly the last few weeks of 2014 almost blew me away. In those moments, I forgot all of the blessings and greatness the year offered. After a very difficult week, I found myself in the bed for several hours – no, days – to recover. That recovery brought me to and through the Winter Solstice. While I am not expert on spirit and solstice and things of that nature, I do know it is a time of reflection, healing, preparation and cleaning.

Forcing myself up and out of bed, my 72 hour stint of nothingness left my place a wreck and me feeling worse. That state, observing the mess, I began to think “What can I throw away?” and “How much is Molly Maids.?”

My heart and thoughts took me back to a place when I visited a church with my Raleigh bestie. The First Lady of her church offers words of encouragement monthly in a five minute or less spill. This one was so great, I never forgot it. . . Until I did. She spoke about losing to gain. It was a play on the Special K commercial. She told the congregation loss is often hard, but it makes us better.

In my stupor -- in my sadness and doubt -- I began to reflect on that question. What will I gain when I lose? And I kept wondering what was in my closet. The Solstice is about renewing self. Cleansing. Noting the calendar, I was making every attempt to clean out my closet – literally – and I felt all these emotions. . . this energy. IT was odd, but not. I touched old clothes and immediately remembered the last time I wore the item, the people I was with and how it made me feel. I as dug deeper in the closet, I found old clothes from past loves, their letters, cards and personal gifts. Deeper still, journals chronicling those loves. Ouch! I was taken aback (the writing could be any soap opera), the emotional energy and those things . . . were too much to bear.

What I failed to realize was holding these things for me was holding the person in my life. If he no longer meant anything, why do I still have his basketball shorts? If he no longer meant anything, why do I still have his wife beater? Why am I still holding on to the tickets to our first movie, concert, and other then-special occasions? It provided perfect clutter for my life – is it possible it provided the same clutter for my heart rendering me unable to completely give of myself? Love? 

As I dug through all that stuff, I kept hearing the First Lady’s voice: “What will you gain when you lose?” While I don’t recall any of the points, the title was catchy because it is a commercial. The commercial creates a positive space for women who want to lose weight. Instead of observing women as fat, unhealthy objects, they position weight loss and women in positive places – giving them the encouragement to follow their weight loss goals. She had a spiritual spin on it. Me? Mine is regular.

When I started touching those items, looking at the pictures, seeing friends (this is not limited to past loves, but past friendships, too) and experiencing those times, I couldn’t help but wonder why I have lugged this stuff from home to home thinking it important. While these experiences molded me into the person I have become, I'm not sure the constant reminder is necessary. In throwing out his clothes, I allowed myself to breathe – seriously – and really look at the relationship in its totality. I have the limited scope lens: only recalling what was good in the relationship. Only. Then beating myself up for allowing a ‘good man’ to leave me or me leave him. As I created different piles for Goodwill, Salvation Army, women’s shelters, and just trash, I began to really unpack the truth of each relationship.

It hurt. Hurt piled on top of hurt often begets anger.

But I kept digging and sorting.

I threw away the past. I will hopefully always have the memories. But I have learned I don’t have to be in close proximity to love a person. Loving from a distance, especially when the relationship is beyond repair, is necessary. If people are no longer supportive and giving in your circle, it is imperative to distance yourself and build another circle.

I threw away the pain. Clothes are energy. Other people’s things are energy. If the love is gone, there is no need to hold on to things that no longer serve you.

I threw away doubt. In a relationship that I have longed lamented, I constantly doubted his love, my place in his life and our existence. Initially I thought it was normal and every woman had those thoughts – but no. the doubt I had was connected to his behavior; his way of attempting to love me.

I threw away resentment. I stopped resenting old friends who have decided to leave, those I have left, and the relationships that haven’t worked.

As I pulled all this stuff to the curb all that energy and dead weight were very heavy to carry. But I shifted it and put it in the car for Goodwill and other charities. In that transaction, I realized I received a good will . . . taking out the old, tarnished hurt, I gifted it so it could be used for someone’s greater; better. In so doing, I was really relieving myself of negative energy but learning in a few hours how to truly forGIVE. As I lost all that weight, I gained a way to give. I gained a new way of thinking, I gained new insight. So by losing, I gained a tax receipt. I gained love, acceptance.

I thought about it again as I sat in two Watch Night Services – both with the people I was with as we brought in 2014 – and realized I have new friends, new family, new love. My pastor spoke of leaving doubt behind and really believing in our higher selves. I will. I have. This is the first year in about eight that I have entered the new year completely alone in the sense of not having a male/female relationship. I am not in limbo. I am not wondering. I am not married. I am no one’s girlfriend. I am not connected to anyone romantically.

It feels FREE.

I gained freedom. I gained love.

I gained a perspective of understanding what 2014 was – the dream state. In the dream state is where creations and ideas begin. In the manifestation, is where they come true. 2015 is the year of manifestation. As I have lost, the gains are so much more.

In 2015, I want all people, women especially, to remember how wonderful they are. Friends come and go – men do too – and so do jobs. . . but the inner person remains. If we recycle, replenish and rejoice daily, our inner woman will be wonderfully fed.

So I ask, what will you gain when you lose?

. . . As Free As I Wanna Be . . . 
Still Goal D Locs


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